Flying after diving and decompression sickness.
Reports of 1,159 decompression sickness (DCS) incidents during recreational diving were analyzed by logistic regression for the effects of flying on the occurrence of Type II DCS, complete relief of symptoms after one recompression, and residual symptoms 3 months after treatment. The relevant diver populations were those who: 1) did not fly; 2) had symptoms before flying but flew anyhow; 3) and did not have symptoms before flying but developed symptoms during or after flight. Of the total DCS population, 13.9% had preflight symptoms while 5.6% developed symptoms during or after flight. Symptoms which occurred during or after flight were no more serious and their responses to recompression no less successful than symptoms in nonflying divers. There was a statistically significant association between divers who flew with pre-existing symptoms and Type II DCS, incomplete relief with one recompression, and residual symptoms after 3 months.
Vann, RD; Denoble, P; Emmerman, MN; Corson, KS
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